Watch Sir Simon Schama at the Henley Literary Festival

Enjoy an audience with renowned academic and author Simon Schama as he discusses the history of pandemics, and what future historians will make of our present.

Historian. Writer. Presenter. Professor. Thinker. It’s hard to know where to start with Simon Schama. Over the past 20 years, the prolific academic has brought history to life through our television screens, allowing us to imagine and better understand everything from King Charles I’s execution to Tolstoys Russia.  

This year, the world-class historian published Foreign Bodies, a book that grippingly tells the stories of past pandemics of cities and countries engulfed by panic and death, desperate for vaccines but fearful of what inoculation may bring.  

Now Schama makes his debut at Henley Literary Festival, discussing all of the above and more, which you can watch on Saturday October 7, at 10am, here:

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Schama was born in 1945 in London, and spent his childhood in Southend-on-Sea, later moving back to London. He studied history at Christs College, Cambridge, and graduated with a starred first in 1966.  

He was a fellow at Christs College, Cambridge, for 10 years before becoming university fellow and tutor in modern history at Brasenose College, Oxford. In 1980, Schama moved on to Harvard University and, since 1993, he has been a professor of history and art history at Columbia University. He lives in New York.

Simon SchamaCredit: Henley Literary Festival

A History of Britain, which was broadcast between 2000 and 2002, was arguably the landmark TV documentary series that made Schama a household name. His other television projects include Civilisations, Simon Schamas Power of Art, and more recently, in 2022, History of Now. Fellow historian Niall Ferguson calls him the Dickens of modern historiography”. 

We are thrilled to bring this conversation, with writer Daniel Hahn, to Saga Exceptional. 


Written by Saga Exceptional